Disclosure: This is a partnered post with Tangerine Bank. All opinions and views on this post are 100% my own

Uncertain Times

My mother is never wrong- never wrong when it comes to finances that is. She always says that you don’t know what life may throw your way so make sure that you have enough money set aside to deal with it. This was probably because my father was injured when we were young, and she oversaw the family finances. The loss of my father’s income was  devastating for my mother, but she managed to pay the mortgage, feed, and care for three young children and her husband and never made us feel like we were struggling. I don’t know how she managed. Her advice is to always put away a certain amount of each paycheque, no matter how small the amount to create a habit of saving.

Fast Forward 2020

How many of you were prepared for the financial uncertainties of 2020? This health emergency has created a financial emergency for so many. So how many of you were forced to use your emergency savings and how many months of savings did you have in place? Did you have enough to see you through. I know people that have kept their jobs and have not been affected. I know single people who have lost their only source of income, and I know couples who have one income. The issue with losing income is that bill still must be paid.

The biggest issue for almost everyone that I have spoken to is CREDIT CARD DEBT. Without credit card debt,most told me it would have been easier to manage their finances.  Canadians have very high debt levels. According to Statistic Canada, Canadians owe $1.77 for every $1.00 they earn. According to Equifax Canada did a non-mortgage debt (credit cards and lines of credit) for Canadian increased to $23,800.

Emergency Savings? How much should you save?

Everyone is different when it comes to emergency savings. You need to do what is best for you, but here are some guidelines prior to 2020

  • 3-6 months of savings for emergencies.
  • Dual income household 3 months
  • Single income household 6 months.
  • 12 months If you run a small business

I have decided to increase the amount of my emergency savings based on these uncertain times.

 Lockdown Finances

Did you saving and spending habits change during the lockdown? Mine did considerably.


  • Coffee: no take out (+)
  • Coffee in house: stopped drinking coffee at home as well (++)
  • Groceries: spent more (-)


  • Entertainment: didn’t leave the house so didn’t spend money (+)
  • Dinner/Takeout: didn’t go out for dinner (+)
  • Gas: didn’t drive other to move the car to keep it running okay (+)
  • Ubers/Cabs/Parking: Didn’t go to meetings or events so there was no need to use these services (+)

Personal Care

  • Manicure/pedicures: salons were not open (+)
  • Hair Salon: hair salons not open (+)
  • Makeup: No new makeup because I wasn’t wearing makeup (+)


  • Clothing: No new clothing required (+)

Household Operation

  • Utilities: always at home so utilities increased (-)

Work Related

  • Office supplies: was working so this remained consistent (0)
  • Electronics: had to replace cables (0)
  • Cell phone bill: Didn’t leave house so lowered my data plan (+)

My new spending rules

As the economy starts to open up, I have a new approach to spending:

  • Going to increase my emergency fund to 12 months worth of expenses
  • No major purchases until my emergency fund is saved
  • Only purchase things that I need, not the things that I want

Have you made any decisions? How have you been #MoneySavvy during these uncertain times? I am so excited that Tangerine is hosting a Twitter Chat! YEAH! Join us on June 25, 2020 at the Managing Your Money Twitter chat with @TangerineBank and share your tips. Hope to see you there!


Date: Thursday, June 25, 2020
Time: 8:00pm ET – 9:00pm ET
Host: @TangerineBank
Moderator: @ShesConnected
Hashtag: #MoneySavvy
No RSVP Required
$500 in prizing


Here are some of my fave articles on the . Let me know which ones you like best!

  • Managing Uncertain Times
  • Navigating a Layoff as a Couple
  • Adjusting Spending When Our Financial Situation Changes
  • Financial Planning During COVD-19
  • Investing and the COVID-19 Situation
  • Avalanche or Snowball? Two Ways to Pay Off Credit Card Debt
  • Managing Your Debt in Difficult Times